Diary

Is Verbal Agility a Prerequisite for President?

As  we play games of comparative gotchas and flubs and less than articulare speech with all nominees and office holders, I think it is time for more than a few people to say– STOP!!!!.   Do we want leaders who have a good understanding of the economy, world affairs, energy policy or do we want debate champions?  Oh yes, it is traditional to have debates.  I am not saying stop that, but this other nonsense where the press tosses a question at a candidate or non-candidate while the candidate is in transit to somewhere  and waits for that person to mis-speak or picks apart the grammar or whatever needs to stop.  It needs to stop because it is not about substance.  I never dictate documents that have to be written because I just don’t think as well when I cannot see what I have written.  Word processing programs are a great gift to me because I can type as fast as I think and see it there on the page before me.  But being able to write is not verbal agility of the kind that some pundits seem to think reflects intelligence.  The only verbal agility they claim reflects intelligence is the ability to answer unrehearsed questions with fluidity.  To me, that is nice but it isn’t intelligence of the sort that we need in a President.  We need someone who has the right understanding of the public interest, who can learn from other experts but still make her own judgments, who can listen carefully and who gets the right answer under pressure and when it counts  and for the long run.  We learn whether a candidate has this kind of intelligence by looking at his or her record.  So, IMHO, Mitt Romney is just out.  He devised a plan for socialized medicine in Massachusetts which is suffering all of the problems that critics of socialized medicine have always said it would suffer.

Anyone who still buysin to Cap and Trade or carbon taxes IMHO simply hasn’t looked at the conflicting science.  So anyone who has adopted a pro position or hasn’t bothered to do the research (which one can easily do on the internet) really is disqualified given the fact that this is a major issue.  It is a major issue because this administration has already begun to implement carbon restriction regulations through the EPA and some states, like California, have adopted seriously bad laws based on it.

So I really don’t care what newspapers someone reads every day.  I would have difficulty answering that question because I get my news from the internet.  So I read pieces of dozens of papers.  And none.

A candidate’s positions on issues and a candidate’s record in dealing with them is far more important than gotcha questions and media devised IQ tests.